Climate Outreach Team

The Climate Outreach Team (formerly called CV-CAT) was formed in April 2011 when a group of Michigan State University Extension educators gathered together to review input and observations on the impacts of weather and climate conditions from various stakeholders in field crop agriculture. Their goal was to discuss MSU Extension's role in climate change outreach and education, and in response, the team was born. The Climate Outreach Team has grown to include representatives from each institute within MSU Extension — Agriculture and Agribusiness, Community, Food & Environment, Children and Youth, and Health and Nutrition — Extension affiliates and other departments on campus. 

The Climate Outreach Team fosters dialogue with rural and urban communities, as well as stakeholders involved in economic development, natural resources and our youth. This multi-disciplinary approach fosters a greater understanding of each group’s needs and contributions to create and improve social capital in communities. The team is also well positioned to identify and assemble resources, as well as to develop training materials and webinars on risk management strategies.

Our Goals

  • Help MSU Extension personnel and clientele understand inter-relationships between climate, agriculture, natural resources and society.
  • Introduce MSU Extension personnel and clientele to scenarios for climate change and potential implications for Michigan’s agricultural and natural ecosystems.
  • Disseminate science-based information to a broader public audience on regional climate change and associated societal response options.
  • Design Extension programming to work with clientele on building adaptive capacity and resilience to seasonal climate variability and long-term changes in climate.
  • Promote and facilitate linkages between MSU Extension personnel and stakeholders who need scientific information on climate risks and who would benefit from development of new technologies and decision support systems.

Team Members

The Climate Outreach Team is made up of dedicated individuals — campus and field-based — who bring a broad understanding of agricultural management practices, policy, science communication and climate to the effort. This group includes researchers, policy specialists and educators. Many team members are involved in multi-state projects and programs which give them access to cutting-edge research and management tools that could benefit agriculture producers in Michigan. Our members include: